Yesterday we accompanied my mum and stepdad to pick up a hedge trimmer they had won on eBay. There was of course more to this trip – we went to nearby Bath afterwards. We probably should have been prepared for how cold it would be but I believe in Yeovil (where we all live) we are slightly more sheltered from the elements. Neverless, due to the weather the city was comparatively quiet so I was able to take some photos without loads of people in my way.
Bath – Roman Baths, Jane Austen, funny tasting water. The entire city is so full of History and important buildings that it is listed as a Word Heritage Site.
I fell in love with Bath when my family holidayed there in 2001, we did all the touristy things – went to the Jane Austen museum (a little over-rated), toured the roman Baths (well worth the admission) and tasted the water (initially nice then was like rotten eggs).
I have been a few times since and for me it is a city that is well worth wandering without aim. There are so many beautiful buildings to see, quirky shops to discover and wonderful little cafes. I have never been a big museum fan but the Roman Baths is somewhere you simply cannot miss, not only is it like walking back in time but is incredibly well run. When it comes to Jane Austen though I found the museum in her old house in Alton a much better visit.
Being a bit of an architectural buff a visit for me requires without a visit to The Circus and Royal Crescent. Both are brilliant examples of Georgian architecture and have been featured in the 2008 film The Duchess as well as numerous adaptations of Austen novels. Sadly on this occasion it was just too cold to walk to them; our noses had gone very red, we could see our breath and despite being layered up as if going to the North Pole the lure of the warm car was too much.
Overall my favourite thing about Bath is that it does not feel like a city due to its compact size, you can easily walk to all the major attractions and a day-trip is easily enough time to see the main sights. Another big draw is the number of non-chain shops, I always find the staff in them incredibly friendly and they never make you feel uncomfortable for just browsing. A few of my favourites:
- Itchy Feet – award-winning outdoor travel shop. All the staff are very knowledgable and friendly. Anything you could want for camping can be found here.
- Topping & Company – heaven for booklovers. The owners make you feel like you are browsing a friends extensive library. They also do very good tea and coffee for free!
- The Bath Sweet Shoppe – no explanation needed.
Bath really is the best of both for history and for shopping/eating out. There really is every sort of eatery you could ask for, in addition to the usual cuisines there are also Thai, Portuguese and German. You could easily have too much choice when it comes to eating out. In this respect I cannot recommend anywhere as we usually buy a picnic lunch from the local Waitrose and eat it on a bench over-looking the river – cheaper and great for people watching.
On to the photos from yesterday: